Farewell from Gold Head

The RV is clean inside and out, top to bottom, so she is ready to roll and moving day is Friday.

We have had a wonderful time volunteering here at Mike Roess Branch Gold Head State Park. As I have already posted, we started out working hard every weekday cleaning the day use area and the park in general – a four hour shift. We were promoted a couple of weeks ago and since then have been taking care of Sandhill campground (18 sites and showers/restrooms), and thankfully takes considerably less effort than our previous job.

A little about Mike Roess Branch Gold Head State Park… It was developed in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and many any of the historical structures they built are still in use today. The park is on rolling sandhills in the central ridge of Florida and boasts a deep ravine with springs coming from its sides that divide the area and forms Gold Head Branch. Marshes, lakes and scrub support a wide variety of wildlife (e.g., pocket gophers, gopher turtles, turkeys, deer, coral snakes, and a nice variety of birds).

The park rangers are hardworking and have provided a welcoming environment. While they could use some new vehicles, they make the best of it and are always working to keep the park in great shape. About five volunteer couples rotate in to support the park by cleaning three campgrounds and the day use area.

An interesting note is that the sign shop here at Gold Head makes ALL of the signs for ALL of the Florida state parks. We took a tour of their operation one day and we were amazed at the work they do. There are just two employees in this shop and they use a computer program for sign layout and they have a neat printer that produces vinyl peel and stick printouts. With a machine, they roll on a sheet of vinyl (brown, yellow, or white depending on the type of sign) directly onto the aluminum, which they cut to size. And all of the lettering and graphics are manually placed on the signs. They also make all the huge entrance sign boards which are made using some sort of styrofoam wrapped/framed in aluminum with wood lettering, and they have a paint booth where they paint these big signs. It was a hands-on working tour so that both Ken and I actually took park in lettering a sign. It was very cool and hard to imagine that two people can keep up with the volume of sign jobs they receive and they were happy to entertain us in what seems to be a stress-free and pleasant environment they foster, even though several clipboards with job orders were hung and waiting on the door.

If you ever get the chance to come for a visit, we do recommend this lovely park with its cozy cabins and campgrounds!

Our tour here was a short one – only two and a half months and while we enjoyed it, we are ready to move southwest to the Daytona Beach/Ormond Beach/Ponce Inlet areas and meet up with family and friends. Cori’s family and Alan will join us for Thanksgiving week with the Stafford’s and then we will stay on through Christmas.

Until next time, Ken and I wish you and yours a Happy Thanksgiving! 🦃

The Maupin’s

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